Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Some simple things that make and keep me happy...

Let me start by stating that I am not a Pollyanna...
I am by nature an optimist
I lean towards sappy
I am very much a family gal
 I befriend for life
my ties are strong
 I defend my beliefs...
(I can be stubborn)

I have not always been in a happy place
I went through a patch of poutiness and darkness in early menopause
I felt profound sadness
and didn't know why

I spent many years tending to the needs of others
my family
my job
working here to keep the home fires burning 
 working at school
my life was fast paced
and I was in constant
fight or flight

I put my own needs aside in a corner  
I would ignore them 
I felt that all the other things required of me were of a high priority

one day I felt very blue
and weary
laden with a heavy burden


I had questions and no answers...
I went through the motions of work
home keeping
attending meetings
balancing the cheque book
grocery shopping
weeding the garden
and I felt
something was amiss


I read self help books
ate chocolate
and settled upon the book
Simple Abundance 
by Sarah Ban Breathnach 
which was instrumental in my healing.

I found myself 
taking time to get to know what I liked and enjoyed
time to
honour and nurture

Hello Me!

That was quite a few years ago and I have never looked back.

I have grieved the death of both of our fathers
supported 2 family members with cancers
have had to find my own way
and not get bogged down with negativity.

Some simple things that make and keep me happy are:

love of the ocean
 the fresh salt air
the sound of the lapping waves

The waterfront walk
not far from The Bungalow

I can sit and ponder
and de-stress
and look at the view 
breathing in beauty

The ocean changes with the tides and weather
the colours can be bright or grey and dull
it can be warm and calm or stormy and cold.
as long as I am dressed for the weather
I am happy to be walking

There are so many simple things that contribute to my well being
and most of them are free

Hunting and gathering
from nature

"found items"
things that I do not set out to look for...
seem to find their way into my gaze
and I am pleased
and often surprised


out of the blue
significant when made by the giver

Arts and Crafts candlesticks designed and crafted by darling son
in shop class at school
made of oak
with copper tops
and only pure beeswax candles can live here!

I adore and honour beeswax
the scent
the warm and gentle light
and that all those wonderful industrious bees co-operated to make the wax.
I use these often
and when I light the flame
I take a moment to reflect and give thanks.

I love a  phone conversation
with my BFF
it can be a short or long call
sharing life and events
checking in to see how she is doing
what's new
what might be troubling her
what her family is up to...
 the sound of her voice
checking in and connecting
we laugh
we cry
it's pure
and honest
it's what we do....

My Family...
my children
my husband...
and Isla
 grand daughter 
of 12 weeks
whose smile can light up a room
she is such a sweet little girl
who has entered my world 
and given me such immense joy
that it is hard to describe...
I would love to see her everyday
just thinking about her puts a smile on my face
my brag book is full!

I know that life has many twists and turns and I have no idea what is around the next corner for me...
but I do know that how I react to these events
and the tools that I employ to get me through the rough bits
are key for me.

More another day.....are your thoughts of gratitude?
So much unexpected places.

Hugs from the Hostess


  1. i have read both books and love them. i love this post leslie. gratitude is the key to everything. i am grateful today that you are one of my dearest cyber-friends.


  2. Hostess, what an ineffably sweet post. Thank you for sharing the little things that make you happy. This made me happy too.

  3. Such a gorgeous post and written perfectly. It's like I can hear your voice reading it out. I have some of SBB's books and love them. I also picked up Gift From the Sea when thrifting. I was so happy to see it and be able to take it home for a small donation.

    Thank you for your thoughts of gratitude. I often come back to what I am grateful for and it never fails to change my mood (or attitude).

    Merci Leslie.

  4. Beautiful post, Hostess!

    Thank you.

    SSG xxx

  5. The Gardener's Cottage- Janet I am grateful that we have connected, and I plan to reread these books sometime soon.

    LPC-I thank you for a new word...I had to look that one up and I'm pleased that you enjoyed reading was much more personal than my usual posts.

    Fiona-I do hope that you enjoy A Gift From the Sea, Anne Morrow Lindbergh's words really spoke to me.

    SSG-Thank you and BTW, you have a great new HERMES purchase I see!

  6. that was an inspirational post. I read your blog but haven't commented before. I am in my 50's and have recently started the journey to where you are now. Janey

  7. I am grateful for the small things in life that comfort me and and make me smile, and for the people who love me and care about me.

    Loved this post xxxx

  8. You must write that book Leslie.
    A beautiful post.
    Thank you

  9. Anonymous-Janey- Welcome to the Humble Bungalow!
    I am happy that you stopped in and good luck on the journey.

    Faux Fucshia-Thank you and I must say that I can "feel your gratitude" as it resonates through your blog posts...that's one of the reasons that I keep coming back to visit!

    Anne-Marie-I have been thinking of writing a book...but have taken no action! Perhaps it's that pesky procrastination rearing it's ugly head again!

  10. Wonderful post - these issues have been on my mind very much recently as well. Around 30s-40s I hit a terrible patch - I'd spent my whole prior life working as hard as possible to do all of the things that I had been raised to believe I "should" do. Multiple degrees, a professional career, the hardest jobs, the male-dominated jobs, the "right" organizations - and I was totally miserable with all of it. Never wanted any of it in the first place, but believed that it was better than I was and I had to go for it all.

    Healing for me has largely been the best free things in life too - music, books, friends, nature, bird watching, great food (especially fresh local things), dinners with a glass of wine, lots and lots of walks and slow runs outdoors.

    Really, these small free things are the best things (along with family). None of that "should" stuff signifies at all.

  11. Hostess, you are a darling: ) Thank you for your fine post!

  12. What a lovely post. I really enjoyed reading it.

  13. What a very real & honest post. You have such amazing 'voice' when you write! I love 'Simple Abundance' and I go back to it often! Angie xo

  14. Artful lawyer- It is very liberating when we stop and think about who we are and what really matters...that word "should" has way too much glad that you have come through the "darkness"...your tools for success are to be admired.

    Metscan-I thank you for that lovely comment...
    I must say your recent photo deserves to be on your sidebar, you my dear are the darling!

    Victoria-Ozarks Crescent Mural-After I wrote this post I felt like maybe I had peeled away a few too many layers...but it would seem that I struck a chord here.

    Angie@Echoes of Laughter-Sarah has an amazing voice and it inspired me to rediscover myself...she made it so much easier with her daily thoughts...I have given her book to several friends.

  15. Very enlightening post and revelation you had. I think the only thing I see missing is God. He is the one who made all of the natural things and people that you love and bring you happiness. I have read Simple Abundance, and a few of her other books. I think they are very insightful , I just recall the author wanted her readers to believe in ' whoever ' to be spiritual. I believe the only whoever is God. Keep up the great blogging, Gina

  16. Antique Art Garden-I am a very spiritual soul although I do not attend or worship in a church.

    I popped over to visit your blog and to look at your garden.

    I am so very sorry to hear of your recent loss.
    Your words show a strength and grace unequal to anything that I can fathom....your faith is standing you in good stead.

  17. A very tender post that we can all identify with. I am almost 45 and seem to be just coming into my rough patch. Some days I feel sorry for my family - I'm not fit to live with.